Chestnut Oak : Regenerative Cycle
For most species of Oak, the period between mastings is roughly 2 to 3 years, meaning that every 2 or 3 years the tree will produce an especially bountiful supply of acorns. However our favorite Oak, the Chestnut, is more of a slow-roller, masting only every 4 to 5 years. In a non-mast year, it generally produces under 10 lbs., causing animals to compete heavily over available acorns. However, when it is time for the big boy to mast, the Chestnut Oak is capable of producing up to 300 lbs. of acorns in a single season! Chestnut Oak acorns mature in one growing season, beginning their growth in mid spring and dropping to the ground from early September to early October, earlier than most other upland Oaks. The quality of the acorn crop has been shown to correlate with variations in temperature and humidity in the spring, with a warmer-than usual spring followed by a cooler-than-usual May yielding the best results, and when it’s a good year for the Chestnut Oak, it’s a good year for everybody!